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Olympic Sports: Tigers Defeat Gamecocks, Bulldogs

Both soccer programs had big wins over a rival on Friday night; The men won 3-0 in dominant fashion over the Gamecocks and the women battled out a 1-0 victory on the road against the Bulldogs.

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Men's Soccer (3-0-0)

In front of nearly 8,000 people the Men's Soccer team completely dominated the South Carolina Gamecocks 3-0, with two goals from Oliver Shannon and one from TJ Casner. The 3-0 scoreline could have easily been 4-0 or 5-0.

Clemson was more athletic, more talented, more fit, and a better side with regards to technique and tactics. All of these contributed to Clemson dominating possession and the flow of the game. South Carolina only had an extended spell of possession a handful of times. The Tigers were camped out in South Carolina's half of the field almost the entire game. Clemson was particularly dominant in the midfield, with Paul Clowes and Oliver Shannon passing and running circles around Gamecocks.

The Tigers started the game in their 4-2-3-1 with Tarbell in goal, Jones, Fisher, Bunk-Anderson, and Mafi across the back, Shannon and Clowes holding, Chinchilla, Moreno, Campos advanced, and Burnikel as the lone striker. However, Moreno was replaced by Casner after the Brazilian came off the field relatively early with an apparent hamstring injury.

Clemson almost got their first goal with about 25 minutes left in the first half when Diego Campos cut in from the left wing and sent a blistering shot off the crossbar. The Tigers were able to get their first a few minutes later when some nice combination play from Mafi and Burnikel down the wing allowed Mafi to get past the defense before sending in a cross that found Shannon unmarked near the back post.

The second goal after that came after Chinchilla and Casner had some good combo play at the top corner of the box before Casner slotted his shot into the far corner past the keeper.

The final goal came after a horrific clearance by South Carolina (maybe he should put his purse into it next time.) Shannon got the ball back after the clearance near the top of the box and ripper a shot near post passed the goalie. It appeared that Burnikel got the slightest of touches on the ball but the goal was credited to Shannon.

One of the best outcomes of this game was the playing time the younger players, such as Michael Melvin, Grayson Raynor, Tyler Rider, and others got throughout the game. That should really help them develop since playing time will be little bit harder to come by for some of these players (mainly because of their youth) once the conference schedule gets underway.

Overall, this was about as good of a game you could have hoped for against South Carolina. The Tigers completely dominated from start to finish and look to be in fantastic form with the conference season getting closer. Clemson has its toughest test of the season on Monday night with Top 25 Coastal Carolina coming to town.

Women's Soccer (4-0-0)

Clemson hit the road on Friday to travel down to Athens to take on the Bulldogs and came away with a 1-0 victory.

Across any sport, road games always present a challenge, so a win, no matter what the score, is impressive.

The Tigers did a good job in keeping Georgia off the scoreboard as Clemson has struggled with giving away the first goal of the match in the past two games. Tiger Keeper Kailen Sheridan was solid in goal, finishing the game with 11 saves. Freshman striker Alana Hockenhull scored the only goal of the game off a cross by fullback Claire Wagner. Coach Radwanski had talked about getting the ball into wide positions with the fullbacks and wingers to place the defense under greater pressure. Stretching the defense horizontally creates space through the middle and allows for better vertical attacking.

The Lady Tigers hit the road again on Monday, heading up to Spartanburg to play Wofford. Clemson looks to be in solid shape in the non-conference season and has a few more non-con games to warm up with before they open up the ACC schedule in two weeks with a home game against Notre Dame.